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September 1, 2018

High resolution annotation of zebrafish transcriptome using long-read sequencing.

With the emergence of zebrafish as an important model organism, a concerted effort has been made to study its transcriptome. This effort is limited, however, by gaps in zebrafish annotation, which are especially pronounced concerning transcripts dynamically expressed during zygotic genome activation (ZGA). To date, short-read sequencing has been the principal technology for zebrafish transcriptome annotation. In part because these sequence reads are too short for assembly methods to resolve the full complexity of the transcriptome, the current annotation is rudimentary. By providing direct observation of full-length transcripts, recently refined long-read sequencing platforms can dramatically improve annotation coverage and accuracy.…

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August 29, 2017

From RNA to full-length transcripts: The PacBio Iso-Seq method for transcriptome analysis and genome annotation

A single gene may encode a surprising number of proteins, each with a distinct biological function. This is especially true in complex eukaryotes. Short- read RNA sequencing (RNA-seq) works by physically shearing transcript isoforms into smaller pieces and bioinformatically reassembling them, leaving opportunity for misassembly or incomplete capture of the full diversity of isoforms from genes of interest. The PacBio Isoform Sequencing (Iso-Seq™) method employs long reads to sequence transcript isoforms from the 5’ end to their poly-A tails, eliminating the need for transcript reconstruction and inference. These long reads result in complete, unambiguous information about alternatively spliced exons, transcriptional…

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July 13, 2016

Cloche is a bHLH-PAS transcription factor that drives haemato-vascular specification.

Vascular and haematopoietic cells organize into specialized tissues during early embryogenesis to supply essential nutrients to all organs and thus play critical roles in development and disease. At the top of the haemato-vascular specification cascade lies cloche, a gene that when mutated in zebrafish leads to the striking phenotype of loss of most endothelial and haematopoietic cells and a significant increase in cardiomyocyte numbers. Although this mutant has been analysed extensively to investigate mesoderm diversification and differentiation and continues to be broadly used as a unique avascular model, the isolation of the cloche gene has been challenging due to its…

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May 1, 2016

Genomic organization of the zebrafish (Danio rerio) T cell receptor alpha/delta locus and analysis of expressed products.

In testing the hypothesis that all jawed vertebrate classes employ immunoglobulin heavy chain V (IgHV) gene segments in their T cell receptor (TCR)d encoding loci, we found that some basic characterization was required of zebrafish TCRd. We began by annotating and characterizing the TCRa/d locus of Danio rerio based on the most recent genome assembly, GRCz10. We identified a total of 141 theoretically functional V segments which we grouped into 41 families based upon 70 % nucleotide identity. This number represents the second greatest count of apparently functional V genes thus far described in an antigen receptor locus with the exception…

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